Opinion: May God bless America

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(AP)

I never thought this day would come, but here it is.

I thought that this country, our country, would never be so foolish as to elect a man like Donald Trump as its president, but it has done so. He didn’t win the votes of a majority or even plurality of Americans, but he won under the system by which we have all agreed to govern ourselves, and he is about to take the oath of office with all the power, authority and responsibility that it entails.

Let me put this honestly, because times like this require it: By placing itself in Trump’s small, grasping and groping hands, my country disappointed me in ways I never thought possible. It is more divided and troubled than I understood as well. As the Rev. Franklin Graham pointed out this week, it wasn’t Trump who divided us. We can’t blame him for that. He is the symptom, the consequence, the beneficiary of that division, but he is far from its cause.

That said, this transition has done nothing to ease the sinking feeling in my gut on Election Night. To the contrary, it has deepened it. Our incoming president has shown no sign whatsoever of growing into his responsibilities. The pettiness, the arrogance of willful ignorance, the venality, the Twitter insults — none of it has changed.

On more substantive grounds, the strong suspicion that this man who sold himself as the defender of the little man against the establishment would instead govern to enrich and protect that establishment has been confirmed by his Cabinet appointees, typified by a Treasury nominee so rich that he simply forgot $100 million in assets on his disclosure forms. As head of the Energy Department, charged with operating our nation’s nuclear-weapons infrastructure, we’re replacing an MIT physicist with a politician who couldn’t remember that he wanted to eliminate the department. And as head of the Department of Education, we have a person who has devoted her entire time in public life to the dismantling of public education.

On the international scene, Trump’s bizarre obsession with Russia and Vladimir Putin continues to mystify, and his mistreatment and disdain for longtime American allies continues to weaken us. He has demonstrably undercut our international influence and trust before even taking office, and I doubt we can adequately imagine what he’ll do once in the Oval Office.

Many Trump supporters are angry that so many of their fellow Americans have refused to embrace our new president and remain so strongly opposed to him. I understand that frustration, but personally, my fears and suspicions about the man have made it impossible to put on a happy face and celebrate his ascension, and I lack the cynicism needed to pretend.

I am not alone. It is telling that in poll after poll, Trump’s standing and support among the citizenry have if anything declined in the 66 days since his election, to the point that he is by far the most unpopular president to take office in the modern era.

The most recent poll, from his friends at Fox News, say that only 37 percent approve of how he has handled his transition, while 54 percent disapprove. And the transition is, or ought to be, the easy part. From here it gets difficult.

(Eight years ago, Barack Obama’s approval stood at almost 80 percent. By Fox’s estimate, he leaves office with an approval/disapproval rating of 57/39.)

In that Fox poll, just one-third of voters described the mood of the country as “we’re all in this together.” Almost two-thirds say it’s now every man, woman and child for themselves. Clearly, the sense of hope and optimism that generally carries a new president into office does not exist, and as a man who feeds off conflict and division, Trump has no chance or even interest in changing that.

God bless America.

 

Reader Comments 0

1184 comments
thialand
thialand

In Bookman's and liberals'  minds, their candidate would have made the better president.  The candidate who accused half the Trump supporters of sexism, xenophobia, racist, homophobic and Islamaphobic.  We are deplorable and irredeemable. She said so. But  I have yet to be told of comments Trump made that are any of the above.  


In 2008, America voted for a thoroughly unqualified man to be president other than he was born in the US and was of age.  By that measure (and the Constitution)Trump qualifies.  Since liberals like to say Trump is otherwise unqualified, it is easy to argue he's more qualified than either Obama or Hillary.  But, one cannot argue/debate sycophants.

carterjoseph1950
carterjoseph1950

I'm with you all the way, Jay. But there's just one thing...

There is no God. As is evident with DJT as POTUS. 

Christen Brown-Andre
Christen Brown-Andre

Explain to me how Obama failed this nation. I'm gonna need facts not just your opinion \U0001f610 #illwait

Vincent1234
Vincent1234

Jay- poor little snowflake.  You're such a little weenie. You really need to grow a pair.

RonMexico
RonMexico

@Vincent1234 This is the same as every other comment posted by every other Trumpanzee. Get some new material. 

Steve Morris
Steve Morris

Trump will be a great president after the failed Obama

Larry Johnson
Larry Johnson

Will you hold him accountable if he doesn't? We are counting on you guys now. If things get " worse" what would you do?

Steve Morris
Steve Morris

Larry Johnson things can't get worse only better for America. Obama failed his Nation! Obama elected 1200 Democrats lost seats

rimsky
rimsky

Protests, Violence Flare Around Inaugural Ceremony

---------------

Common protestors don't behave like the Trumpettes.  You are diminishing the real cause.  You are destroying the property of the people who want on your side.

Your enemy is the GOP who are destroying all that is good in America.  Take them on not common folks.

rimsky
rimsky

Just checking folks.  Are we great already yet?

YouLibs
YouLibs

@rimsky


Yeah, but not for much longer, I fear.


The lowest common denominator is killing us. Honestly, this was what the Electoral College was supposed to protect us from.


Failed big time this time.

LarryWhorley
LarryWhorley

It's been years since I've read the AJC.  Good to know things haven't changed, you're still the liberal rag you've always been and your best example is Bookman.


What a irrelevant, tiny person you are, Jay.  Your brand of journalism will be demolished in the next four years.  Of course, you will always have work since you have plenty of idiots to support you. 


Why don't you do something constructive for a change?  You do realize you live in a Republican state, don't you?  Probably not since you don't have a clue.

rimsky
rimsky

@LarryWhorley After all these looks like you never improved.  Still an ignorant booo........

RufusATL
RufusATL

@LarryWhorley Count me among the idiots in support of Bookman--he is one of the main reasons I subscribe to the AJC.  Where idiots are concerned, Georgia surely has more than her share; but, this state nor this country has turned into a totalitarian dictatorship yet.  However, you can always hope, eh Larry? 

YouLibs
YouLibs

@LarryWhorley


Lovely inauguration. Too bad they couldn't get the tanks and missiles, they would have made it complete.


The Uhmercan people ain't gone be stupid no more.


Trump gone see to that.

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

@YouLibs @LarryWhorley Think of how the local police departments have been allowed to arm themselves over the last few years with all kinds of big firepower war material!


Anyone got a link to the AJC article on it from a year or so ago?  Had a list of what departments had acquired what.

wcrigler
wcrigler

Leave it alone?

Make it better?

Tear it down?

Bookman chooses the latter.

Always the voice of dissent.

Never the voice of progress.

HDB0329
HDB0329

"Many Trump supporters are angry that so many of their fellow Americans have refused to embrace our new president and remain so strongly opposed to him."....why should we?? Look at the levels of disrespect, obstruction and obfuscation President Obama went through for EIGHT YEARS!! We should give the Orange Cheeto the same level of respect Republicans gave to President Obama: NONE!!

wcrigler
wcrigler

Bookman,

Get over it and try to do something constructive, or leave the country.

Please.

HDB0329
HDB0329

@wcrigler Jay IS doing something constructive; it's called DISSENT!!

RonMexico
RonMexico

@wcrigler Here's the problem with your suggestion: If all the people smart enough to see through Trump's scam take your advice and leave the country, the only people left here will be morons like you & the other 24% of the country that actually voted for the ignoramus. That's a recipe for disaster. We'll stick around to clean up the mess in 2018 and 2020 instead. 

Brosephus
Brosephus

@StraightNoChaser

I'll let y'all have fun.  I need to feed my troops and get ready for work tomorrow. 


Have fun.

DawgDadII
DawgDadII

"Clearly, the sense of hope and optimism that generally carries a new president into office does not exist"


I understand this is generally the case in the 1/2 of America comprising your political circle, but it's quite the opposite in the other half. Given that the market is weighing in on this in clearly measurable metrics, perhaps you might want to step back and reflect on your core beliefs a bit, if you truly believe the stuff you print?

Kamchak
Kamchak

@DawgDadII 

As everyone except the ostriches among us knows

Logical fallacy.

See: Argumentum ad populum.

Just sayin'.

Kamchak
Kamchak

@DawgDadII 

A 95 point rise ? 

Less than one half of one percent?

LOL!

And for the record, the DJIA was trading at 19,829 when Trump was sworn in.

Just sayin'.

Kamchak
Kamchak

@DawgDadII 

 Given that the market is weighing in on this in clearly measurable metrics

(sigh)

And exactly which metrics are those?

stefpe
stefpe

@DawgDadII Just because "the market" is doing well hardly means people in general are doing well.

DawgDadII
DawgDadII

@Kamchak @DawgDadII My last post on this. As everyone except the ostriches among us knows, the market has jumped significantly since immediately prior to the election. Fact. The fact that it may have dropped a few points at the run up to the closing bell is hardly relevant in the big picture.

DawgDadII
DawgDadII

@stefpe @DawgDadII We are talking about the sense of hope and optimism, in case you are having trouble following the thread.

JFMcNamara
JFMcNamara

@DawgDadII @Kamchak You aren't really covering this in totality.  The run up was driven by basically 3 companies (Goldman Sachs, United Healthcare and Caterpillar) and was not broad based.  


What that tells us is that the global elites are optimistic (Goldman), healthcare will get more expensive and prices will rise or expensive people will be stripped of insurance (UHC) and we may get some infrastructure projects (CAT).  The stock market run up completely backs up Jay's point.


http://www.cnbc.com/2016/12/05/just-three-stocks-are-responsible-for-almost-half-of-the-dows-huge-one-month-rally.html

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

Race relations have WORSENED under O Bama significantly!

I think it's fascinating that some of my right wing citizens believe that "race relations" is a metric that can be measured independently like GDP or global temps.


Brosephus
Brosephus

I try to watch the local news and I see this low energy parade instead.  Sad.

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@Brosephus

Did you don your Donald accent when you typed "low energy" just then? I know I would.

Brosephus
Brosephus

@Starik

I can only imagine the stress level for Secret Service and other law enforcement there.  When protesters vastly outnumber supporters, the thought of someone doing something stupid weighs heavily on the mind.

quickdigits
quickdigits

@Brosephus @Starik I kinda feel sorry for you. Trump could care less about the protesters. He has much Bigger things to deal with now. 

Brosephus
Brosephus

@Starik

I kinda feel sorry for Trump.  He's expecting to be this hugely popular, highly lauded person, and instead, he's entering office with an approval rating that's entering Congress level.